International Transactions ClinicThe International Transactions Clinic (ITC) will concentrate on teaching students skills that are critically important to their professional development as they enter into practice areas that involve international transactions. These include drafting and negotiation skills as applied to cross-border transactions, exposure to ethical issues that arise in the international commercial context, structuring and documenting investments in enterprises that primarily work in emerging markets, and an understanding of international economic and financial policy. Students in the ITC are strongly encouraged to participate for two semesters so as to allow them to provide legal support in the negotiation and documentation of multiple international transactions. To the greatest extent possible, students will have significant client exposure in the course of working on transactions, although in some cases due to the international context of these transactions such client exposure may be "virtual" making use of email, skype, and other means of electronic communication. The transactional work of the ITC will be focused on negotiating and documenting cross-border deals, particularly in emerging markets. In some cases, clients of the ITC might be providers of microfinance (loans, savings, insurance and/or remittances) to microentrepreneurs and other low income households. In other cases, clients of the ITC might be socially responsible investors that want to see their investments provide a double bottomline return, eg making a positive social impact on people's lives while also earning a financial return. Still other clients might be stakeholders interested in promoting business opportunities at the base of the pyramid, such as microfranchises (or those that fund microfranchises) that are developing "business in a box" models to build business skills and offer employment opportunities to poor individuals. Clients also could include international organizations that are helping to build enabling legal and regulatory environments for businesses operating in emerging markets. And, finally, clients might include multinational corporations or other types of business enterprises, such as small or medium entrepreneurs, that are conducting cross-border transactions. The clinic will be co-taught in 2008-2009 by Deborah Burand, who will be joining the Michigan faculty full-time this fall, and who has nearly 20 years experience in microfinance and international finance, most recently at the Grameen Foundation; Professor Michael S. Barr, who teaches international finance and financial institutions regulation; and Timothy Dickinson, of Paul Hastings, who teaches transnational law and international commercial law as a long-time adjunct member of this faculty.
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